Economy Adds 1.4 Million Jobs in August, Unemployment Rate Falls to 8.4%

The U.S. added 1.4 million jobs in August, the Labor Department reported Friday.

The unemployment rate declined to 8.4 percent from 10.2 percent in July, according to the August jobs report, falling below 10 percent for the first time since March. Labor force participation also increased by 0.3 percent in August, an indication of both increasing strength in the job market and rising confidence among job-seekers.

August marks the fourth consecutive month of job gains and declining unemployment since the U.S. economy bottomed out in April. More than 20 million Americans lost their jobs that month, pushing the unemployment rate to a post-Great Depression high of 14.7 percent.

The economy has now recovered roughly 10.7 million of the jobs lost to the pandemic as of August, though the number of unemployed Americans is still 11.5 million above its pre-coronavirus level in February.

August also brought declines in the number of Americans unemployed for less than five weeks and those unemployed for anywhere between five and 14 weeks, while the number of long-term unemployed Americans was little changed.